Having worked my way through my April Birchbox, I have some thoughts to share on the products I sampled.
LAFCO House & Home Soap
I don’t know that I would shell out $17 for a the full size of this, but it seemed like a nice soap. Unfortunately I didn’t care for the rather herbal scent of the sample (in Fleur de Baies).
Joanna Vargas Daily Serum
For skin care–especially a serum–one should really use the product regularly for 4-6 weeks to get a full sense of its efficacy. I didn’t really notice any difference after using the sample I received, but then I wasn’t able to use it for very long. However, given the price tag ($85 for 1 fl. oz.), I don’t think I would try my luck after the sample’s lack of results.
Simple Revitalizing Eye Roll-on
Actually got a full-size of this drugstore product in the box. I think for any product like this, the cooling effect of the metal ball helps to depuff the eyes a bit–but so would a chilled spoon or something of the sort. I think the formula is moisturizing, but I don’t think it actively depuffs my eyes when I haven’t had enough sleep. I have tried the Clinique All About Eyes De-Puffing Massage (a similar product), and I think it was a bit more effective. Given the affordability of this product ($11), it might be worth a try if you haven’t, but I think I’d look into other drugstore versions (Garnier perhaps), before I repurchased this one.
Mirenesse Glossy Kiss
This is an Australian company, whose products I haven’t tried before. I believe the sample of this may have been full-size as well, but unfortunately does not have the twist up design of the full-size, but requires a sharpener. I got this is Quick Kiss (classic pink), which is pretty, if a little boring. It would probably suit a lot of different skin tones, but most people likely have a shade like this already. I’m actually pretty jealous that some people got the coral shade in their box. As far as the formula goes, I found it a bit drying; this might be an ok trade-off if it lasted really well, but it doesn’t. It also felt a little heavy and waxy on the lips–just a little, but still.
There are so many of these jumbo lip pencils out now, and this one is quite pricey: $27 for the full size, which not only triples the price of drugstore versions, but even outstrips most high-end versions. Compare it to NARS Velvet Lip Pencils ($25), tarte Lipsurgence ($24), Urban Decay Super-Saturated High Gloss Lipcolor ($19), or Clinique Chubby Sticks ($16). If you are interested in trying the jumbo lip pencils, I think there are some many options that are both cheaper and higher quality.
Kérastase Age Premium Bain Substantif – Cleanse
This lathered well, seemed nice while I was using it, but didn’t do anything special for my hair. Given the price, I don’t think I’d purchase.
So much for the product. But frankly, I was pretty upset at receiving this packette sample in my Birchbox. Okay, to be air, it was 2 packettes, but really, the service promises 5 deluxe samples, and this wasn’t nearly enough product to deserve that name. I could walk into Sephora any day of the week and get the same size sample without even purchasing anything.
So another Birchbox has come and gone, and I have to say that, yet again, I was a bit disappointed. The products weren’t bad, but in general they’re not products I would have chosen to try, and opening up the box was a deflating experience. On top of that, I’m really beginning to feel that it’s simply not worth the money. I’m paying for samples that would come free with other purchases, and most of them are products I don’t even want to try. I’ve just gotten the shipping notification for my May box, but I think after that I am going to cancel my subscription.